September 4, 2013

Over it

I know you thought you lost me there.  Came back to post only to disappear again.  Oh no, you didn’t.  I was just sitting in my own little purgatory for the past few days.

My goal was precise: get Quint settled in Kinder, get my house back in order, catch up and organize my workload, settle back into a routine with my little gal at home and start prepping for a packed school year in the forecast for Anton AND Quint.  That was my plan.  I LIKE plans, friends.  They make me happy and feel like I have my arms around things.  Plans and lists are like my happy place.  And I had both.  Little lists and little plans all over my desk.  To boot, we even had a three-day weekend to extend all of that organizing/preparing goodness. 

It started great!  The house was coming together (don’t ask what the Summer months do to my house…it’s just a filthy shame).  The workload was right on track.  Keira and I were getting a rhythm.  Friday arrived like a blink and suddenly it was sweet family time.  We were all exhausted and cocooned in, hunkered down eating AB’s yummy food and watching movies together.  Saturday, we worked all day on the house and those sort of chores you put off for months.  I was in heaven!  Sunday was the same.

And then.  Oh sweet mother…


Now I want to say that my hat is officially off and will remain so, to every single human being walking the planet who has suffered through this in any fashion. 

A gallbladder attack.

Oh sit down. Shut the door.  Hug a bunny. Talk to Jesus.  I thought I was going to die.

As in die, people.  Have you been through this?  I know some of you have.  You know that to which I am referring?  It’s the ne’er discussed black plague of the gallbladder that is like having knives shoved into your chest and twisted around to your back and all kinds of vomiting and other end type stuff that should not be mentioned on a respectable blog…but it’s just GOT to be said.


Sunday night was a blur of wailing, crawling on the floor in the general direction of the bathroom 432 times, cursing fatty foods that don’t break down, repeatedly pointing and clutching at my chest, bargaining with the Almighty, occasional swinging of my arms in the general direction of AB (isn’t that precious?), and alternately sweating like a ranch-hand and shivering in sweats and wooly socks under three layers of blankets in 100 degree weather.  Now I ask you!

The pain was like nothing I’ve ever experienced in my life.  Having never given birth, I personally can’t even begin to compare it to that.  But I have had a few mothers point out that their gallbladder attacks were by far, much worse pain.  People.  Worse than childbirth.  What kind of nonsense setup is that?  I thought childbirth was the worst pain known to humans – we’ve all accepted this and moved on and rightly so, placed all other pain below it.  The gallbladder should not rate anywhere near it.  That’s my $.02.  I guess it just has the “gall” to try to compete… (rim-shot here). 

So I miraculously made it through Sunday night.  But Monday morning, it came back with a vengeance.  Before you start throwing popcorn at the screen and yelling “go to the hospital already!!” – let me just let you down gently.  Or not.  I didn’t go.  So get it out of your system.  I am one of the umpteen million who do not have insurance.  I was trying to be tough.  Suck it up.  Get through it.  

But Monday morning, I was hysterical.  It was back?!?!  No!  No.  Just no.  I was crying and yelling all sorts of crazy and pacing and then falling over and then repeating.  Anton just kept watch.  Herded the children away from me.  Gave me space, but not too much.  Tried to keep the house quiet so I could try to sleep and he stayed close when I was awake.  He also provided the occasional “You know, I can take you to the hospital…” – to which I would say “no, it’s fine…I’m fine…I’m good…this is fine…we’re all fine….I’m fine…the gallbladder is fine”.  Crazy talk.  CRAZY, I tell you.  And then it stopped.  It just stopped right around 11am.  I still had other symptoms, (think front end and back end non-polite symptoms) so I laid very low on Monday.  Tried to be gentle with myself.  Ate rice and soup, bananas and a smoothie.  Went to bed.  Prayed.  and......

Woke up at 2am Monday night.  It was back.  This is the angriest gallbladder.  You don’t even know…he’s just angry all the time.  Or snarky.  Or just really tired of being associated with the other expendable organs like tonsils and spleen.  Whatever....

I know, I know!  “Got to the hospital” – I hear you shouting.  I know.  But no.  I woke Anton up an hour into my crazy.  The pain wasn’t as bad this time, but the various symptoms associated with it were overwhelming me.  After a horrendous vomiting session, an eye bleed, and being swaddled like a newborn – I was asleep.  And I slept for many hours.

That was it.  It’s been since Tuesday at 4am that I had any pain or other symptoms.   Other than being totally wiped out and exhausted.  I went to bed at 8:30 last night and slept right on through to this morning.  I have eaten in the past 24 hours a few times, and have been fine. 

Now let me sum-up this un-lovely story with the following:  although right now, dear reader, you might wholly disagree – we did feel were monitoring that situation really closely.  We could throw a rock and hit the hospital and a stand-alone ER.  We might be far from out of the woods.  We both agree that another attack will warrant an immediate trip to the ER.  We both feel I was passing a gallstone that was very stubborn or perhaps larger than normal.  We both want to avoid a ruptured gallbladder.  Truly.  We also want to avoid thousands in hospital bills (but WILL go, absolutely, if need be)  We both agree this was a horrible 48 hours.  We both feel certain that I can’t handle another “episode”.  All that to say…for the moment, I seem to be recovered.  If it comes back, we’re outie and I assume Mr. Gallbladder is too.  Snarky little creep.

For once in my life, I can honestly say that there was NO PAIN that my fear of hospitals could have inflicted on me that would have been worse in any way than what I was experiencing in my bedroom since Sunday night.  Needles?  No problem.  Hit me!  Surgery, you say?  Let’s do it!  Yes.  Pluck that bladder o’ gall right on outta me.  Hospital food?  Sure….ish. 

Think I’m better now.  That’s the thing about the gallbladder…you just never can tell.  It’s just HITS YOU.  On the other hand, a friend put it well “God put it there for a reason…I’d kinda like to hang on to it, if I can”. 

Meanwhile, I'm off to eat a {banana/water/broth/insert some really boring tasteless food here}.


likeschocolate said...

While I haven't suffered from a gallbladder attack, I have suffered from a pancrease attack and ouch! I thought I was going to die! So I feel for you ! Not fun!

Carrie said...

Wow! I'm so sorry you had to go through all that and I really hope you don't continue to have trouble with it. I completely understand the dance you have to do when you don't have insurance... it's bad but is it TOO bad? Not a fun situation at all!

I had my pesky gallbladder removed several years ago and while it's a pain to have not polite side effects from eating too much fat, it's a world better than those gallbladder attacks! I have given birth twice with no drugs of any kind and i can absolutely say, without a doubt, that the gallbladder attacks were more painful!

Just be careful... gallstones can black the pancreatic duct and cause pancreatitis which is something you want to avoid at all costs if you can!!

Christie said...

Girls, it was the total PITS! Poor AB summed the whole thing up as "grim". Now I'm worried about pancreatitis! YIKES!

Debbie said...

So sorry to hear about your gallbladder attack. That really stinks.

My son avoids going to doctors because he doesn't have insurance. Always concerned about the cost, so I understand why you avoid going. But please take care of yourself.

Melanie said...


I know you are avoiding the doctor for now but don't put it off forever. If it's infected or develop pancreatitis you're going to have a real problem on your hands and at twice the expense. I had mine out on August 22nd and it is so nice not to have that constant nagging discomfort on my right side. Good luck!

Christie said...

No worries, Melanie. We went to the ER on Thursday and started the process for getting medical attention. It's moving along!

Rachel Lewis said...

New to your blog. I've never had a gallbladder issue, but from what I understand, what I had can mimic a gall bladder attack. I was pregnant, and unbeknownst to me and everyone else, i had developed HELLP syndrome. The pain in my belly was excruciating... And it was on top of the constant vomitting and dry-heaving and on top of the regular contractions. It hurt so bad I told my doula i wanted to die, just so i wouldn't be in pain. And i was serious. Her response? "don't worry dear... This is just the beginning. It's about to get so much worse." they all thought i was just being a wussy first timer. Instead, my liver was on the verge of rupturing. Worse pain ever. It felt like you said, getting stabbed. Horrible.

I've also had my fallopian tube rupture from my ectopic pregnancy. That pain was a close second.

I have never gone through a regular childbirth. That still scares me... But my mom assures me that it doesn't compare to what I've gone through.

I'm so very sorry you had to go through that much pain.

Paula said...

OUCH!!! Do take care! I get it. Not the health care piece as I'm in Canada and our health care is totally different - but I get the not wanting to go. I have a tendency to avoid simply because I dislike going so much! Not good in this case though! Hope you're on the mend.